Spotlighting Pan-African Poetry

Biography

I am my Fathers' Daughter

Enlarge poem

Sasa, Muta fanya nini???

I am the continuation of the story;
the never ending dream is infused in my genes,
embedded in my DNA, rooted in my core!
A combination of many stories,
many people, many nations
I am my father’s daughter,
with a mouth to speak
and a scream to shriek,
a tale to tell….

Imprisoned from conception,
my mother’s womb my holding cell,
my umbilical cord, my shackles
Breaking free I cried out,
a cry for freedom

He heard me and a song he sang,
not a lullaby but a liberation song,
He sang to me in Shona…
‘’Mbuya neHanda kufa vachitaura shuwa,
kuti tinotora sei nyika, shoko rimwe ravakatiudza
tora Gidhi uzvitonge’’

My cries silenced,
he told me a story of a man,
a banished man whose voice
they tried to silence when he dared to speak!
He traced his journey on my palm,
he told me
It is the blood that speaks
The blood that spills reveals
The blood that drips,
strips the government bare screaming

‘Bear all leaders of the led! tell the tall tale; weave your web of lies…”

Tails between their legs,
knees knocking, clenched fists shaking,
they agreed to mislead
‘Let us bind them that have sight despite the night”
Yes, the senile sent many into exile, barred many behind bars.
He points at an empty page and says, this is your armor!
In my hands he places a book
Careful child,…
But they are just words I say,

Wangari Ngugi

Featured Poem:

Daughter of Exile

Enlarge poem

I have been running for so long
I have forgotten what it is
that is chasing me.
But I dare not stop!

Yes like the others
I will carry on running,
they say, if you stop,
you seize to be,
it catches you,
sinks its claws into you
and rips you apart,
there is no turning back,
so like the others I carry on running!

I am not afraid, never was to begin with,
curious yes, but not afraid because,
Pain I have seen and heard
but I have never felt,
never felt the sting,
never has the venom flowed deep within my veins,
paralyzing my soul,
never have I felt its blade
slice through my limbs or
gunshots tear through my flesh,
never have I felt hunger pangs rip through my insides.
Never been whipped till my black turned blue,
never been kicked and punched till my bones went snap!

I was lucky, I was shielded from the sadists
who craved my blood, they say my armor
is still shiny and new,
theirs have dents,
they have history,
they have life,
and they have character.
but I feel my case is worse off than theirs,
worse off than those that felt the pain!
I have scars, deep rooted scars.
Dedan Kimathi’s cuffs dangle from my wrists,
Nyayo house whips tattooed on my back, generations
of tears burned into my skin! I have scars!
All they see is my shiny unscathed self
and a tongue too heavy to carry its mother tongue.
Words spoken like a drunken whore slurry
and unsure like a baby antelope.
How can my people say they protected me
when my mouth does not speak and my hears
do not hear what my ancestors say!
Gibberish! Gibberish all I speak is English.
Tell me, who is free?
Is it I the born free or
them that know who it is
and what it is we never stop running from,
never stop hiding from,
never stop fighting!!!

Is knowledge freedom or is freedom knowledge,
I have neither so what does that make me?
A rootless tree, without freedom of mind how can I be free,
without freedom of tongue how can I be free???
Look at me! Do I look free to you?
I am a prisoner of the worst kind,
a daughter of exile.

A child born in prison on foreign land.
Chained and shackled by my own.
A child judged before I existed,
rejected by my government,
rejected by my people.
I fear everything,
I am afraid not of what I run from but of the one I run with,
I am not afraid coz I am not free, I am afraid coz I am not me!!
So when I arrive tell me, who will I be with if I am not with me!
I am the girl from nowhere who shall return from where she came!

WangariNgugi

How does this featured poem make you feel?

  • Amazement (1)
  • Pride (0)
  • Optimism (0)
  • Anger (1)
  • Delight (0)
  • Inspiration (2)
  • Reflection (1)
  • Captivation (1)
  • Peace (0)
  • Amusement (0)
  • Sorrow (0)
  • Vigour (1)
  • Hope (3)
  • Sadness (3)
  • Fear (1)
  • Jubilation (1)

Comments

  1. Superb.. :-)
    Your Literary work is superb. I’m touched by the words expressed from your life experience. I would like to contact you on another aspect. Let me know how

    Edwin Maina

Your email address will not be published.

Biography

Wangari Ngugi is the daughter of the late Ngugi Wa Mirii. She was born in exile in Harare, Zimbabwe and thus goes by the name ‘daughter of exile’. She is inspired to write by her experiences growing up as well as current economic, social and political issues affecting our world today.

She is a passionate performer who hopes to be published by the end of 2011, who is currently working on a book as well as a compilation of her poetry. She has written two poems for the ‘We want Peace’ campaign spear headed by Emmanuel Jal aimed at creating awareness about the need for global action to prevent war in Sudan. Her work can also be found www.myndz-community.com where she blogs occasionally.

Wangari Ngugi

WangariNgugi
WangariNgugi

Biography

Wangari Ngugi is the daughter of the late Ngugi Wa Mirii. She was born in exile in Harare, Zimbabwe and thus goes by the name ‘daughter of exile’. She is inspired to write by her experiences growing up as well as current economic, social and political issues affecting our world today.

She is a passionate performer who hopes to be published by the end of 2011, who is currently working on a book as well as a compilation of her poetry. She has written two poems for the ‘We want Peace’ campaign spear headed by Emmanuel Jal aimed at creating awareness about the need for global action to prevent war in Sudan. Her work can also be found www.myndz-community.com where she blogs occasionally.

I am my Fathers' Daughter

Enlarge poem

Sasa, Muta fanya nini???

I am the continuation of the story;
the never ending dream is infused in my genes,
embedded in my DNA, rooted in my core!
A combination of many stories,
many people, many nations
I am my father’s daughter,
with a mouth to speak
and a scream to shriek,
a tale to tell….

Imprisoned from conception,
my mother’s womb my holding cell,
my umbilical cord, my shackles
Breaking free I cried out,
a cry for freedom

He heard me and a song he sang,
not a lullaby but a liberation song,
He sang to me in Shona…
‘’Mbuya neHanda kufa vachitaura shuwa,
kuti tinotora sei nyika, shoko rimwe ravakatiudza
tora Gidhi uzvitonge’’

My cries silenced,
he told me a story of a man,
a banished man whose voice
they tried to silence when he dared to speak!
He traced his journey on my palm,
he told me
It is the blood that speaks
The blood that spills reveals
The blood that drips,
strips the government bare screaming

‘Bear all leaders of the led! tell the tall tale; weave your web of lies…”

Tails between their legs,
knees knocking, clenched fists shaking,
they agreed to mislead
‘Let us bind them that have sight despite the night”
Yes, the senile sent many into exile, barred many behind bars.
He points at an empty page and says, this is your armor!
In my hands he places a book
Careful child,…
But they are just words I say,

Featured Poem:

Daughter of Exile

Enlarge poem

I have been running for so long
I have forgotten what it is
that is chasing me.
But I dare not stop!

Yes like the others
I will carry on running,
they say, if you stop,
you seize to be,
it catches you,
sinks its claws into you
and rips you apart,
there is no turning back,
so like the others I carry on running!

I am not afraid, never was to begin with,
curious yes, but not afraid because,
Pain I have seen and heard
but I have never felt,
never felt the sting,
never has the venom flowed deep within my veins,
paralyzing my soul,
never have I felt its blade
slice through my limbs or
gunshots tear through my flesh,
never have I felt hunger pangs rip through my insides.
Never been whipped till my black turned blue,
never been kicked and punched till my bones went snap!

I was lucky, I was shielded from the sadists
who craved my blood, they say my armor
is still shiny and new,
theirs have dents,
they have history,
they have life,
and they have character.
but I feel my case is worse off than theirs,
worse off than those that felt the pain!
I have scars, deep rooted scars.
Dedan Kimathi’s cuffs dangle from my wrists,
Nyayo house whips tattooed on my back, generations
of tears burned into my skin! I have scars!
All they see is my shiny unscathed self
and a tongue too heavy to carry its mother tongue.
Words spoken like a drunken whore slurry
and unsure like a baby antelope.
How can my people say they protected me
when my mouth does not speak and my hears
do not hear what my ancestors say!
Gibberish! Gibberish all I speak is English.
Tell me, who is free?
Is it I the born free or
them that know who it is
and what it is we never stop running from,
never stop hiding from,
never stop fighting!!!

Is knowledge freedom or is freedom knowledge,
I have neither so what does that make me?
A rootless tree, without freedom of mind how can I be free,
without freedom of tongue how can I be free???
Look at me! Do I look free to you?
I am a prisoner of the worst kind,
a daughter of exile.

A child born in prison on foreign land.
Chained and shackled by my own.
A child judged before I existed,
rejected by my government,
rejected by my people.
I fear everything,
I am afraid not of what I run from but of the one I run with,
I am not afraid coz I am not free, I am afraid coz I am not me!!
So when I arrive tell me, who will I be with if I am not with me!
I am the girl from nowhere who shall return from where she came!

How does this featured poem make you feel?

  • Amazement (1)
  • Pride (0)
  • Optimism (0)
  • Anger (1)
  • Delight (0)
  • Inspiration (2)
  • Reflection (1)
  • Captivation (1)
  • Peace (0)
  • Amusement (0)
  • Sorrow (0)
  • Vigour (1)
  • Hope (3)
  • Sadness (3)
  • Fear (1)
  • Jubilation (1)

I am my Fathers' Daughter

Enlarge poem

Sasa, Muta fanya nini???

I am the continuation of the story;
the never ending dream is infused in my genes,
embedded in my DNA, rooted in my core!
A combination of many stories,
many people, many nations
I am my father’s daughter,
with a mouth to speak
and a scream to shriek,
a tale to tell….

Imprisoned from conception,
my mother’s womb my holding cell,
my umbilical cord, my shackles
Breaking free I cried out,
a cry for freedom

He heard me and a song he sang,
not a lullaby but a liberation song,
He sang to me in Shona…
‘’Mbuya neHanda kufa vachitaura shuwa,
kuti tinotora sei nyika, shoko rimwe ravakatiudza
tora Gidhi uzvitonge’’

My cries silenced,
he told me a story of a man,
a banished man whose voice
they tried to silence when he dared to speak!
He traced his journey on my palm,
he told me
It is the blood that speaks
The blood that spills reveals
The blood that drips,
strips the government bare screaming

‘Bear all leaders of the led! tell the tall tale; weave your web of lies…”

Tails between their legs,
knees knocking, clenched fists shaking,
they agreed to mislead
‘Let us bind them that have sight despite the night”
Yes, the senile sent many into exile, barred many behind bars.
He points at an empty page and says, this is your armor!
In my hands he places a book
Careful child,…
But they are just words I say,

Comments

  1. Superb.. :-)
    Your Literary work is superb. I’m touched by the words expressed from your life experience. I would like to contact you on another aspect. Let me know how

    Edwin Maina

Your email address will not be published.